China


2009 – PISA Test Snapshot

An examination of PISA test scores among 14 countries active in space offers a more focused view of relative math and science literacy, which has implications for the numbers of STEM graduates each country produces and in turn the supply of STEM-skilled workers available for space-related professions. Exhibit 4bb shows national PISA test scores from 2009 for major space countries in mathematics and science.

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2009 – Chinese Government Space Budget – Snapshot

The Chinese civil space budget is not published, and estimates of spending vary widely. In 2005, the vice administrator of the China National Space Administration (CNSA) stated that the Chinese space budget was US$## million. However, many analysts contend that annual Chinese civil space spending is in fact considerably higher, reaching as much as US$## billion. China has demonstrated dramatic space progress in the past decade, which likely can be linked to growing space expenditures through the CNSA.

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2008 – TIMSS

To gauge how U.S. elementary and middle school students compare with other students in math and science, the results of a test administered by the U.S. Department of Education, known as Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) provide a standardized global measure. The most recent test was administered in 2007.

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2008 – Top-level Trends

“Many young people today with a technical bent are more entranced with the Internet or biotechnology than space exploration. Space travel, after all, was a fascination of their parents’ generation,” noted a February 2003 Wall Street Journal article on recruiting challenges confronting NASA.

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2008 – Workforce

Investment in space creates measurable benefits that flow across a wide spectrum of economic activity. The greatest investment that the space industry can make is in its people. The global space economy creates high-paying jobs and also stimulates demand for products and services in industries not directly linked to space.

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Pinpointing Pollution Prior to Olympics

Beijing Olympic organizers used remote sensing data from a U.S. satellite to analyze aerosol levels in and around Beijing before the games. The data enabled researchers to pinpoint reasons for the pollution and suggest ways to reduce it.

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